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Easter Island

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Author Topic: Easter Island  (Read 711 times)
Carolyn Silver
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« on: March 03, 2007, 02:20:57 am »

Easter Island: land of mystery
 

David Pratt
November 2004

 

Part 3 of 4



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Contents
    6. Platforms (11/05)
    7. Rongorongo
    8. Chronology



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6. Platforms


Easter Island has at least 313 ceremonial platforms or ahu open-air temple sanctuaries erected in honour of the gods and deified ancestors. A few were built inland but most are situated around the coast, usually at sheltered coves and areas favourable for human habitation, though a few are located on cliff edges. They are composed of a rubble core faced with masonry, for which no mortar was used. Seaward walls often consist of uncut stones, but sometimes they consist of precisely carved and fitted blocks. On the landward side was a ramp, paved with lines of beach boulders and sloping down to an artificially levelled plaza.

Some ahu are quite small, but others are remarkable pieces of massive communal engineering, 150 m (500 ft) or more long and up to 7 m (23 ft) high. Some required the moving of 300 to 500 tons of stone, while the Tahai complex comprised three structures requiring 23,000 cubic metres of rock and earth fill, weighing an estimated 2000 tons.

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